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Post Co. board approves share buyback; publisher Weymouth elected as a director

By Steven Mufson
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, September 23, 2010; 11:02 PM

The Washington Post Co.'s board of directors on Thursday authorized the repurchase of up to 750,000 of the company's Class B shares, an announcement that helped boost the company's stock price to $375.75 a share, up 4.3 percent.

The Post also said Katharine Weymouth, publisher of the company's flagship newspaper, was elected to the board, reinforcing expectations that her role will continue to expand.

Weymouth is the great-granddaughter of Eugene Meyer, who bought the newspaper in 1933, and niece of the company's chief executive, Donald E. Graham.

Weymouth joined The Post in 1996 as an assistant counsel and later had a series of jobs in advertising before becoming publisher of the Washington Post newspaper and chief executive of Washington Post Media, which also includes the commuter tabloid Express and the Spanish-language daily El Tiempo Latino.

A graduate of Harvard College and Stanford Law School, Weymouth had earlier clerked for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit and practiced law at Williams & Connolly.

The Post directors did not set a time limit on the share buyback plan. At Thursday's closing price, the repurchase plan would cost about $282 million.

The company had more than $1 billion in cash and securities at the end of the last quarter, and it has $400 million of long-term debt that is not due for about eight years.

The company's last share repurchase, also 750,000 shares, was authorized in January; only 16,312 shares from that buyback remain.

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